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PARLIAMENTARY QUESTIONS

Army: Complaints

Nick Harvey: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many complaints considered under Army redress procedures have been made by (a) officers, (b) non-commissioned officers, (c) private soldiers and (d) untrained private
soldiers since 1997; and how many of these were (i) successful and (ii)
unsuccessful. [165794]

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: The Ministry of Defence does not hold complete records dating
back to 1997. However, during the period 1 January 1999 to 16 November 2007, our
records indicate that 525 officers, 1,172 non-commissioned officers and 252
private soldiers (trained and untrained) applied for redress of complaint.
The results of redress of complaints are not held centrally and could be
provided only at disproportionate cost.

Nick Harvey: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what procedural time
limits apply to the issue of a decision by the Army Board on a complaint under
Army redress procedures relating to (a) sexual harassment, (b) racial
harassment, (c) parental leave directive, (d) pay and (e) religion. [165796]

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: There are no absolute time limits on the processing of
application of complaints by the Army board because each complaint is different
and must be treated on its own merits. Guidance contained within the Army
General Administrative Instruction Chapter 70 suggests 60 working days from
receipt by the board for it to make a determination. However, from 1 January
2008, new procedures will come into effect as a result of the Armed Forces Act
2006. From that point most complaints will be referred to service complaint
panels rather than service boards. The suggested timings for the panels to make
their decisions will be the same as for the Army board at present.

In addition, the new Service Complaints Commissioner will provide an alternative
way for service personnel to make certain types of complaints. The Commissioner
will set her own reporting timelines for monitoring progress when she passes
complaints to the services for action.

Nick Harvey: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many soldiers who
made complaints under Army redress procedures since 1997 subsequently committed
suicide. [165797]

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: Our records indicate that since 1997 one soldier whose death was recorded by a coroner as suicide is known to have submitted a redress of complaint. There is no evidence to suggest that the redress, which was withdrawn, and the soldier’s death were linked.

Army: Disciplinary Proceedings

Nick Harvey: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many (a) officers,
(b) non-commissioned officers and (c) private soldiers have been disciplined
following the outcome of (i) an Army Board decision, (ii) a divisional level
decision and (iii) a unit level decision since 1997. [165795]

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: This information is not held centrally and could be provided
only at disproportionate cost.
Departmental Expenditure

Dr. Fox: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the answer of 13
November 2007, Official Report, column 125W, on departmental expenditure, what
his Department spent on office refurbishment and repairs in each financial year
since 2002-03. [166111]

Derek Twigg: The information is not held in the format requested and could be
provided only at disproportionate cost.
Departmental Public Participation

Dr. Fox: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what public consultations his
Department has conducted since May 2005. [165879]

Derek Twigg: This information is not held centrally and could be provided only
at disproportionate cost.

Written Answers

Thursday 15 November 2007

Afghanistan: Development Assistance

The Earl of Sandwich asked Her Majesty’s Government: Whether there will be an independent audit of official development assistance to Afghanistan; and, if not, what auditing processes

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